Seattle's Floating Farmer's Market...and Taco Boat!May 10, 2012 @ 4:30 pm (Updated: 5:50 pm - 5/10/12 )
By Rachel Belle
The Virginia V is a beautiful, beloved boat here in Seattle. Built in 1922 to move passengers, freight and mail around the Puget Sound, now you can check her out at this weekend's Seattle Maritime Festival or even get married on her. She was one of hundreds of boats that belonged to, what was called, the Mosquito Fleet, but she's the only one left. Now the Virginia V is home to Farm Boat, a floating farmers market in South Lake Union that opened today.
"What we're trying to do is bring back the old world maritime heritage of the Northwest," says founder Dave Petrich. "Link local farmers and craft people with people here in the city."
He says having a farmers market aboard a boat seems novel, but it's pretty true to the old Northwest.
"Really, the inspiration is what people used to do here in the Northwest 100 years ago. Before the 1930's, everybody traveled on boats like this. Before roads connected towns, farmers grew things on the islands and brought them in by boat and often sold them right at the dock. This boat, the Virginia V, was transporting products from Vashon Island to Pike's Place Market in the 1920's."
The Farm Boat is the country's only floating farmer's market and it's now open every Thursday from 11am to 3pm, so you can pick up some flowers, artisan products, fruits and veggies or sit down and have lunch.
"The first taco boat in the country will be tied up next to the Virginia V. You are the first to hear about it. We have not made this public. We're just getting ready to launch the boat this week. It's a restored fishing boat from San Francisco."
Mmm....boat tacos. Dave says this is only one of many farm boats to come. He hopes to eventually open 18 around the Puget Sound, including in West Seattle this summer. Future sites could be in La Conner and Poulsbo, amongst other places.
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